Length of time spent by NASA astronauts on the Moon's surface 1969-1972

Between July 1969 and December 1972, a total of 12 men touched down on the moon's surface. All of these missions were conducted by the National Aeronautics and Space Association as part of their Apollo Program, and all of the men who landed on the moon were American.

Apollo 11

On July 20, 1969, at approximately 13:32 GMT, Neil Armstrong became the first human to land on the moon. He was later joined by Buzz Aldrin, and in total the men spent two hours, thirty-one minutes and forty seconds on the lunar surface. Almost seven years after President John F. Kennedy's promise that America would land man on the moon before the end of the decade, NASA achieved this goal (just five months and ten days short of the target). They would do it again on November 20 that year, with the Apollo 12 mission.

Later missions

After the near-disastrous Apollo 13 mission, NASA sent another four Apollo crews to the moon in 1971 and 1972, with a further eight astronauts making contact with the surface. This included Alan Shepard of the Apollo 14 mission, who had been the first American to travel into space ten years previously. As the missions progressed the moon walks became more frequent and lasted for longer, with Apollo 17 holding the records for longest moonwalk (7 hours 37 minutes) and the longest accumulative time on the surface (22 hours 4 minutes). In total, American astronauts have spent 3 days, 8 hours, 22 minutes and 26 seconds walking on the moon, and since the end of the Apollo Program in 1972, no further manned missions from any space organization have made it to the lunar surface, although NASA does plan to make contact again at some point between 2022 and 2030.

Length of time spent by NASA astronauts on the Moon's surface from 1969 to 1972

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Release date

April 1975


United States

Survey time period

1969 to 1972

Supplementary notes

Hours have been given with metric decimals in the graph. The times given in hours, minutes and seconds (HH:MM:SS) are:
Apollo 11 - 2:31:40
Apollo 12 - First = 03:56:03, Second = 3:49:15, Total = 7:45:18
Apollo 14 - First = 4:47:50, Second = 4:34:41, Total = 9:22:31
Apollo 15 - First = 6:32:42 Second = 7:12:14, Third = 4:49:50, Total = 18:34:46
Apollo 16 - First = 7:11:02, Second = 7:23:09, Third = 5:40:03, Total = 20:14:14
Apollo 17 - First = 7:11:53, Second = 7:36:56, Third = 7:15:08, Total = 22:03:57

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